The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Portales council holds off on lease agreement


July 12, 2018

PORTALES — The Portales City Council decided to hold off on approving a lease agreement at the Portales Municipal Airport during Tuesday’s meeting. But it wasn’t due to lack of interest from the council.

“I don’t think you’re going to have a problem getting it passed (next meeting). I love the idea,” Councilor Chadwick Heflin said.

City Attorney Randy Knudson said he had not reviewed the contract to lease two plots of land at the airport to Bruce Nixon in order to build 10 T-hangars. But Knudson said he had issues with a few items in the agreement, which led to the council’s unanimous decision to table the item until its July 24 meeting.

Knudson said language needs to be included that says the hangar space can only be used to store aircraft and a clause that says potential breaches of the contract be settled by arbitration should be changed to the district court.

According to the agreement, Nixon can collect rent on the hangar space throughout the 30-year lease and at the end of the agreement ownership of the hangars will revert to the city.

City Manager Sammy Standefer said the city will benefit from an increase in fuel sales due to additional aircraft and will be able to sell space in the two Sun Port hangars Nixon will enclose, per the agreement.

Councilors Jim Lucero and Dianne Parker were not present.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting (all votes 6-0):

• Police Chief Pat Gallegos gave a report on railroad speeds. Gallegos said the train speed has been set at 49 mph in Portales, but for several years a slow order has been in place that prohibits speeds over 20 mph due to conditions of the railroad tracks and crossings.

• The council approved an ordinance replacing chapter 19 in the city’s personnel policy. Standefer said the ordinance included changes related the city’s new time management software and the accumulation of administrative time.

Standefer called the personnel policy “a working document,” and said the city needs to review it every year or each time an issue comes up.

There were no comments in a public hearing on the ordinance at Tuesday’s meeting.

• The council approved an agreement with Daniel B. Stephens & Associates, Inc. for engineering services for phase 2 of the Blackwater Wellfield Development Project.

• Councilors Heflin, Lucero, Veronica Cordova and Jake Lopez were selected to serve on the city’s Infrastructure Capital Improvement Project Evaluation Committee.

• The council approved the final budget adjustments for the fiscal year ending last month.

Finance Director Marilyn Rapp said in the city’s general fund, revenues were increased by $338,807 mainly due to gross receipts taxes and budgeted expenditures being reduced by $316,032, largely due to salary savings.


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